Filming and Photography
Filming and Photography Overview
Before filing the online Permit, we recommend contacting an MTA Filming & Events representative using the General Inquiry form to discuss the particular details of your request, including the specific location within Grand Central Terminal you wish to use, the nature of your proposed shoot, date and time availability, and intended use of the imagery. After discussing an overview of your project, you can file the Permit on this website to request the temporary use of the space. The Permit must be filed at least five (5) business days prior to the requested date, but more advance notice is often recommended as Permits are processed on a first-come first-served basis. Note: MTA/Metro-North cannot guarantee review of any Permits filed with less than five (5) business days’ advance notice.
A non-refundable $250 application filing fee is applied to all Permits—there are no exceptions. The non-refundable $250 filing fee is separate from any licensing fees for a commercial use, which shall be discussed with an MTA Filming & Events representative.
For license inquiries for commercial use, please use the General Inquiry form found here and include specific details of your planned use and duration.
Once the online Permit is filed, the review process will officially begin for your proposed request and you will be contacted by an MTA Filming & Events representative.
Who should use this Permit?
Anyone is free to take pictures or video with a handheld consumer camera inside Grand Central Terminal. However if you will be using professional equipment, like a tripod, light, or stabilizer, or if you will be using the content for commercial purposes, you must complete this Permit process to file a Grand Central Terminal Still Photography/Film Permit Application.
How long does the process typically take?
Once the online Permit is filed, the review process will officially begin for your proposed request, and you will be contacted by an MTA Filming & Events representative. We recommend allowing at least ten (10) business days for the process. The online Permit must be filed at least five (5) business days prior to the requested date; we cannot guarantee review of any Permits filed with less than five (5) business days’ advance notice.
Who reviews the Permit? What determines if my request is approved or denied?
An MTA Filming & Events representative reviews each Permit and any accompanying documents to determine availability and feasibility of the request. The primary focus is ensuring the continued safe and orderly operation of Grand Central Terminal—a major transportation hub and tourist destination—during each shoot, as well as verifying that the shoot itself will be conducted in a safe, secure, and code compliant manner.
Are there date or time restrictions?
Permits are issued for a specific date and time on a first-come-first-served basis. In order to avoid rush hours, on weekdays all productions are limited to a time period between 10 AM and 3 PM or after 8 PM. Weekends have no official rush, so time is more flexible. As this is an active transportation hub, there are black-out dates when no Permits will be issued.
What if I have a recognizable celebrity participant, require electrical power, or have another special request?
How much will this cost?
- Each Permit requires a non-refundable $250 filing fee.
- There may be additional license fee requirements if you will be using the resulting imagery for commercial purposes.
How do I determine if my use is a commercial use?
Commercial use of Grand Central Terminal imagery requires a fee-based license agreement, as most elements of the interior and exterior are protected by trademark. To determine if your use is commercial and quote the appropriate use fee, we recommend discussing the details of your planned media use and duration with an MTA Filming & Events representative by using the General Inquiry form found here.
Can I cancel a Grand Central Terminal Still Photography/Film Permit Application?
Please notify your Filming & Events representative as soon as possible of a cancellation request so that your scheduled date and time can be freed up for other requests. The required $250 filing fee is non-refundable.
General Inquiry for Film and/or Photography
To discuss your project or licensing before applying for a permit, or for general information, please fill out this form.